Around noon today, I went to the store to grab a sandwich and a soda. In the liquor aisle, a store employee tripped over a case of Coors Light (taste the Rockies), knocked over a bottle of whiskey, which Rube Goldberg style knocked over a full case wine, crashing and spilling everywhere. It was the saddest, most pathetic thing I've ever seen.
Until I watched the Athletics and the Angels try and play a baseball game started by Raul Alcantara and Jered Weaver.
Not very debut-iful
The story for today's game was Raul Alcantara's debut. Alcantara was acquired in the Andrew Bailey trade, a high upside guy far from the bigs at the time of his acquisition. He'd endure some tough times in the minors lowlighted by Tommy John Surgery in 2014, but seems to be full speed ahead at this juncture.
Unfortunately, his first inning on the mound was rather inauspicious. After getting Cole Kalhoun to flyout to start the game, a clearly overly-amped Alcantara lost all control. He'd hit Mike Trout and allow back to back singles to Pujols and Cron to load the bases. That's a juncture where you probably want to throw strikes and instead, Alcantara would hit Marte and walk Simmons, bringing home the Angels first two runs.
Nick Buss would follow with a sacrifice fly to Khris Davis in left, making the score 3-0. That's all the damage the Angels would do in the first, though Alcantara would "hit" Jett Bandy before getting out of the jam. Hit is in quotation marks as the ball clearly hit Bandy's bat, but god forbid we take seven seconds to use all the technology at our hands to determine that no, that was not a hit by pitch.
A's strike back
In the bottom of the first, the A's struck back with a two spot. Marcus Semien doubled to leadoff and Danny Valencia smacked a donger to follow, making the score 5-2.
It was the first knock for Valencia against a right hander since the clubhouse incident involving Billy Butler.
Nope, don't need that joke.
Cole Kalhoun bomb
There's always talk about how Mike Trout is being wasted in Anaheim, but you might have to feel even worse for Cole Kalhoun. Kalhoun is a very good player, a potential All-Star if he weren't on those Angels yet no one even acknowledges him as Trout (deservedly) takes the pity points.
Anyway, Kalhoun hit a bomb to make it 4-2, so screw him.
A truly ugly Angels' run
In the third, the Angels tacked on another in truly ugly form. With one out, Andrelton Simmons hit a ball to left. With a normal left-fielder, it's a single. With Khris Davis, it was a double and it wasn't even close. He'd move to third on a balk, cause of course Alcantara balked, and would score on a sac fly.
We've just been told that it's first time since 1930 that an A's pitcher has had 3 HBP's and a balk in same game. In case you were curious.— Joe Stiglich (@JoeStiglichCSN) September 5, 2016
The Angels score three in the fouth
A bunch of stuff happened. Ross Detwiler, the guy who was supposed to start tomorrow, came in relief cause this is the wild wild west, and you can't predict what's going to happen!
Anyway, a Pujols double plated two and a Marte single scored the final run of the frame. It was an inning of good hitting against bad pitching and while we can certainly be excited about the young arms throwing in September, here's a reminder that at times, things will be brutal.
A's battle back in the bottom half
Khris Davis and Yonder Alonso drew back to back walks to open the fourth. After a Ryon Healy flyout, Joey Wendle singled to center, plating Davis for Wendle's first career RBI. Congratulations Joey!
That put runners at first and second. Bruce Maxwell came to bat with two outs, slicing a two run double to left field. It was an excellent job of hitting by Maxwell, going with the slow Weaver breaking ball, and it showed why the A's are excited about their new backstop.
And the fifth
The A's tacked on a run in the fifth. Danny Valencia doubled to right on a dropped popup by second baseman Kaleb Cowart. Predictably, Valencia didn't hustle on the play but was fortunate to slide into second ahead of Cole Kalhoun's throw. Khris Davis would follow with a walk and with two outs, Ryon Healy laced a double to deep left, scoring Valencia. 8-6, Angels.
Doo is back. He pitched a scoreless 7th, sitting 93-94, and getting two strikeouts. Welcome back, Sean.
kHRis Davis in the seventh
Dinger to right. Just an absolute blast. 8-7, Angel.
Oakland defense does Oakland things in the top of the ninth
A Pinder error followed by a Davis error led to a run, which led to another run, making the score 10-8, Angels.
Andrew Bailey saves it
The Angels won 10-8 and former A's closer Andrew Bailey closed it out for the Angels. There's a certain beauty in Andrew Bailey closing out Raul Alcantara's MLB debut, but it's obscured by the fact that many of us spent four freaking hours watching that awful baseball game.
Anyway, congrats to Bailey who has taken the long road back from injury to see some MLB time. I wish him success on the field and in finding an organization that isn't the Angels.
An ugly loss
Enjoy the rest of you Labor Day! We'll have more on Alcantara's debut shortly.